HiLux and Ranger still top the tables, market grows over 2017 record

New vehicle industry peak lobby group, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), reported a 4.3 per cent increase in sales and registrations for January 2018 compared to the same month last year.

VFACTS data released today recorded 88,551 sales for the first month of the calendar year. By comparison, the tally for January 2017 - a year in which the all-time annual sales record was broken - was 84,910.

January often gives a good guide to which brands started 2018 without a backlog of dealer demonstrators, opposed to those that had to clear the previous-year’s registered stock.

As has become familiar, SUVs were the dominant vehicle type, snagging 42.8 per cent market share. Passenger vehicles (hatchbacks, sedans, wagons, people-movers, coupes and convertibles) grabbed 36 per cent, and vans/utes 18.9 per cent.

Pictured: Toyota Australia chief, Matthew Callachor 

Top brands January 2018

Perennial market leader Toyota grabbed 17.3 per cent market share with 15,306 sales, up 22 per cent. Joining it on the podium were Mazda (10,113, up 0.5%) and Hyundai (7124, up 6.2%).

Rounding out the top 10 were Holden (5719, down 20.4%), Ford (5645, down 4.5%), Mitsubishi (5263, up 3.7%), Nissan (4707, down 6.1%) Honda (4581, up a massive 32%), Kia (4531, continuing last year’s growth trend to be up 12.9%) and Subaru (4253, up 6.1%).

Other smaller-scale brands that performed comparatively well included Alfa Romeo (79, up 71.7%). Isuzu Ute (1526, up 39.4%), Jeep (556, up 28.1% over its dreadful 2017 tally), LDV (351, up 154.3% as the T60 ute and D90 SUV hit showrooms), Mercedes-Benz (3270, up 9.9%) and Mini (322, up 13%).

Brands that struggled beyond those already mentioned included Audi (1578, down 22.1% and continuing its downward trend after a poor 2017 showing), Citroen (25, down 32.4%), Fiat (117, down 33.5%), Haval (24, down 17.2%), Infiniti (33, down 36.5%), Jaguar (144, down 46.9%), Land Rover (950, down 12.9%) and Renault (742, down 14.1%).

Top brands by volume, January 2018